Category Archives: Healing

Sickness, Healing, And Your Thought Life

I’ve been reading a great book recently called ‘The Essential Guide to Healing’, and in a chapter called ‘Healing And A Prosperous Soul’, the co-author Bill Johnson in passing mentions a mind-blowing statistic:

“We have heard for years that 85 percent of all sickness originates in the mind – not that it is imagined, just that it has its roots in an unhealthy thought life” – Bill Johnson

Could it really be that the state of our thought life is having a much greater effect on our bodies that what we ever realised?

Because Bill prefaced this incredible statistic with the phrase ‘we have heard for years’, I assumed that there would be other easily accessible articles and studies written about it.  So I went to have a look.

Dr Caroline Leaf

6943978_300x300It didn’t take me long to come across Dr Caroline Leaf, who has a PhD in Communication Pathology with a Neuropsychology speciality, and who has spent over 30 years studying the mind-brain connection.  So she’s clearly got some game.

In her post ‘You are What you Think: 75-98% of Mental and Physical Illnesses Come from our Thought Life!‘, Dr Leaf says

“research shows that DNA actually changes shape according to our thoughts” – Dr Caroline Leaf

and she gives a link to an Institute of HeartMath study which in essence tests the effect on DNA of different emotional states.  Their findings were that they saw the DNA change dramatically depending on what the person was thinking and feeling.

This is what the annotation prefacing the research says:

1. When the researchers FELT gratitude, love and appreciation, the DNA responded by RELAXING and the strands unwound. The length of the DNA became longer.

2. When the researchers FELT anger, fear, frustration, or stress, the DNA responded by TIGHTENING UP. It became shorter and SWITCHED OFF many of our DNA codes. The shut down of the DNA codes was reversed and the codes were switched back on again when feelings of love, joy, gratitude and appreciation were felt by the researchers.

(Emphasis mine)

What The Bible Says

Naturally, none of this is a surprise to the One who created our bodies in the first place.  The Bible has a lot to say about the link between what we think and our state of wellbeing.

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind” – Romans 12:2

“For as a man thinks in his heart, so is he” – Proverbs 23:7

“Guard your heart [your inward way of thinking and processing] above all else, for it is the source of life” – Proverbs 4:23

“A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones” – Proverbs 14:30

According to the Scriptures, what goes on in our mind has a profound effect on our physical bodies.

Something To Think About!

So if the findings of this research are correct – then our DNA literally ‘relaxes’ when we feel positive emotions and ‘tightens up’ and ‘switches off’ when we feel negative ones.  This would mean that effective functionality of every cell in our body is partly reliant on the regular emotions that we think and feel.

Thus – by changing the way that we think and feel – we can literally enliven or slowly wreck our own bodies.

So… what do you think?! 🙂  Haha…

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Anyone

Some of the most powerful words in the Bible are the shortest words.  Words like allwill, nothing, and everything.  In the increasingly muddled, grey world that we live in today, where there is exception upon exception, and always a reason as to why ‘this doesn’t apply to me’ or ‘I’m different’ – the promises of the Bible stand resolute and firm.

I came across another pearler this morning in a book that I was reading… quoting from John 14:12:

“I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing.  He will do even greater things than these because I am going to the Father” – John 14:12 (Emphasis mine)

Anyone means… anyone.  For me, this one verse alone puts the nail in the coffin of cessationist thinking, and it breaks forever the clergy/laity paradigm.

Biblically, the only qualification you need to walk in the same power that Jesus walked in – is faith.  You don’t have to have a position, a title, a certificate, worldly influence, charisma, money or connections.  You can be popular or an outcast.  When Jesus says this power is open to anyone – He means it!

But not only does this verse hold for us great promise, it also holds us accountable.  It means there’s also no good reason for me not to be doing what Jesus did.  I can’t blame my history, my circumstances or my church leaders or oversight.  If my life is not seeing the same fruit that Jesus did, then my faith in Him needs examination – because Jesus’ words and promise don’t allow me any other excuse.

Everyone wants to be a ‘someone’.  But based on this… I’d rather be an ‘anyone’!

Strength Through Softness

Romans 15:1 – Now we who are strong ought to bear the weaknesses of the weak, and not to please ourselves.

Sometimes it doesn’t massively please us to have to put up with other people’s weaknesses!  We’d rather they just sort it out, or we don’t have to deal with them. 

But I prove myself as a mature believer, and display the strength that I claim to have, by loving others and helping them in their weakness. Not by cutting and running, but by helping and building.  While it may be easier to do what pleases me – it’s not helpful for the building up of the body. 

So if we claim to be strong, mature believers – this will be tested and evidenced by how we deal with the weaknesses of other people.  It takes huge commitment and strength to continue to show mercy and love when it’s taking a toll on us. 

But this is what Jesus demonstrated and continues to demonstrate to us!

Getting The God-Solution

Ahab had said to Obadiah, “Go through the land to all the springs and valleys. Maybe we can find some grass to keep the horses and mules alive so we will not have to kill any of our animals.” – 1 Kings 18:5 (NIV)

King Ahab is in the middle of a natural famine that has a spiritual cause.  Israel has turned away from following the Lord, and some guy has started rebuilding Jericho – and in the middle of it all, Elijah the prophet turns up from nowhere and says ‘there will be no rain in Israel except by my word’.

Thus Israel has now endured 3 1/2 years of hard drought.  Ahab sends Obadiah out to look through the land to see if he can find some springs or brooks or even some grass to try to keep the animals alive.  It’s a practical move, but at the same time he’s ignoring the spiritual reality of what’s going on.

You can’t solve spiritual problems with practical solutions.  You have to solve spiritual problems with spiritual solutions.  The land is in drought not because of water-cycles or overpopulation or anything – it’s dry because the people have turned away from God.  Interestingly, the moment that the nation falls on it’s face and cries out ‘The Lord He is God’ – Elijah hears the sound of heaven rain!

Sometimes the things that are going on for us aren’t just ‘life’.  Sometimes they have spiritual origins.  In the gospels Jesus often first dealt with demonic powers before healing started to flow.  You have to ‘bind the strongman before you can plunder his house’.

Yes, there are definitely times when you just need to do a few practical things.  But if you find that your life is in famine, and it just keeps going despite all practical solutions being done… maybe it’s time to get down and look to see what might be spiritually going on.

The great thing is that God is so willing to show us if we will just look.  It’s not a coincidence that Obadiah, a righteous man who’d been hiding God’s prophets, was the one who stumbled on Elijah while out looking for water.  God brought Obadiah right to the one who could help him.  He does the same thing for us today!

Breaking Open Historic Wells

From there they continued on to Beer, the well where the LORD said to Moses, “Gather the people together and I will give them water.”  Then Israel sang this song: “Spring up, O well! Sing about it, about the well that the princes dug, that the nobles of the people sank– the nobles with scepters and staffs.” – Numbers 21:16-18 (NIV)

In their journey towards the Promised Land, the Israelites came to a place where God promised to give them water.  It was called ‘Beer’ (which in Hebrew means ‘water’) – but interestingly it doesn’t seem like there’s any water there – as God has to specifically tell Moses that He will give water to the people.  So the people sing, and the princes and nobles dig, and the water flows. 

Leadership Principles

There’s some keys in this passage for those who are leaders – as every leader in some way is a shepherd, with the responsibility of both feeding the sheep and leading them to water.  We feed them with the Word of God, but in order to water them, we must bring them into places where they encounter His power and presence.  Churches and leaders need both the Word and the Spirit working simultaneously in order for the ‘sheep’ to be healthy.  So how do we get a ‘well’ going for our people when it seems like it’s all dry?

Key 1 – Find An Historic Well

The Israelites came to a place called Beer, called water.  There may not have been any water there when they arrived, but there must have been water there at some point in the past for it to have received the name it did.  God has ordained a whole lot of different ‘wells’ for His people to drink from, but many of them have been stopped up or stopped flowing over the years.  But the water is still there, under the ground – ready to be tapped.  Some of these wells include salvation, healing, revival, worship.  When these wells get tapped then power begins to flow and the people of God get refreshed. 

Key 2 – Gather The People Together

The power of unity is well documented in the Word of God – and is an essential key if we’re going to get a well going.  The people must be gathered together, and given a common focus and plan.  Without a united group people – no well will be opened.  But when the people are together – then God’s blessing quickly comes upon the work.  We unite the people by showing them why they need the well – and what has happened historically when that well has been opened.

Key 3 – Sing To It

Worship has supernatural power to unblock wells.  One of the best ways that we can start to unblock a particular well is by choosing songs that we sing together about that well.  For example, if we want to see a healing well unblocked – then it’s important that we’re corporately singing songs about God’s healing power.  The worship not only ‘speaks’ to the situation with words of power, but worship also carries God’s transforming power to change the hearts and minds of those who worship.  Worship gets into the hearts and minds of the people.  Whatever we sing to will spring up in our midst! 

Key 4 – Get The Leaders And Nobles Digging

The final key is to get those who have visible leadership – the ‘leaders’ and ‘nobles’ – to get them ‘digging’ alongside you.  Get them committed to prayer & fasting, and to speaking and encouraging the others.  Get them investing in it. 

In Conclusion

When Israel rocked up to Beer, there was no water there.  But they left behind them a flowing well.  God is calling us to be people like that too – who come into situations where there is no life, and not only get life flowing in our time, but leave behind us a legacy for those who will follow as well. 

Super-Man

Matthew 8:27 – The men marveled, saying, "What kind of man is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?"

It is the reality of the power of Christ that moves people from considering Him to be ‘a great teacher’ to seeing Him as something more.  When Jesus rebukes the wind and the waves and they are immediately calm, the disciples start to twig that they’re dealing with someone who is ‘supernatural’ and ‘superhuman’. 

They ask – ‘what kind of man is this’ – we haven’t seen someone with this kind of power before, that even the wind and the sea respond to His bidding!

The awesome thing about this is that none of the miracles that Jesus performed or the power that Jesus displayed were done as God.  They were all done as a man, trusting in the power of the Holy Spirit.  This means that WE TOO can do the things that He did.  God wants to give us that same power that He gave Christ and move through our lives in a way that will make the world around us say ‘what kind of people are these’?!